World of Tanks: Modern Armor – Four New Maps!
Get developer insights into the creation of four new battlefield maps!
In addition to exciting new vehicles and gameplay options, World of Tanks: Modern Armor is updating your console experience with four brand-new maps, available to play in both Cold War mode and the upper tiers of the legendary game mode!
Each new map is bigger than any other map currently in rotation. Whereas current maps average 1 kilometer by 1 kilometer, the four new maps are 1.4km by 1.4km, giving you tons of replay value.
World of Tanks Console Game Designer Brenden McCormack says it best:
This has been a long and rewarding objective for everyone in the Design team. I am beyond excited to see players jump in game and battle it out on these four brand-new maps. I watched when players saw the first images of the map Fredvang during the stream, and the level of excitement from the community was heartwarming and exciting, to say the least. Roll out!
Below are Brenden’s exclusive insights into the development process for each map. Get the details and take a look at astounding new images from each battlefield!
Dezful concept art
Dezful was the very first map out of the four the Development team worked on. The map itself was researched with actual images of Iranian locations. The old bridge on the map is based on the real old bridge in Dezful, which is one of the oldest bridges still open for the public to walk across.
The early thought with Modern Armor was to have bigger maps, long sightlines, and the Vision System. With maps of this size, players will no longer experience corridor type of gameplay. The size of the map allows for other tank strategies, which creates new battle scenarios, especially when you add cover-to-cover advancement scattered throughout the map for players to approach the center of the map.
In the very center of the map is a raised city block for some good close-quarter gameplay. Then at all four ends of the city block, you have some really good vantage points where you can snipe all borders of the map from there. However, being in the center leaves you susceptible to enemies slowly closing in on your position with few escape options. As a tanker, you need to plan and prioritize your approach.
There are three corners of the map we updated to allow for visual distinction, which is how the oil fields in the northwest corner came about. Working with Art, we came with additional assets that would emphasize what would a player call out in X area to make it easy for them to be like, “Oh, an enemy is in the oil fields.”
Cao Bang concept art
This map was one of the maps that got a lot of attention in all aspects—design, art, engineering, playtesting, etc.
Cao Bang had to go through adjustments for players to traverse the terrain. The hills, while still steep, were leveled down a bit. Some of the areas were widened, and we also updated the terrain ground. It was a soft medium; it is now firm. This affected navigation.
Another contentious design matter with Cao Bang is that it is a jungle map. We wanted to push the limits with a dense foliage approach that allowed for extreme coverage in tank battles. Early iterations of this map really allowed tankers to hide and allowed for teams to be sneaky. While this was a great tank strategic scenario, we wanted to make sure the map was adjusted for other battle events.
Working with the Art team, we scrapped a lot of blockers and replaced some heavy foliage with palm trees. We also allocated the heavy trees toward the mountains, not within the open fields. As a result, when you play the map, you can see most of the map, the city block, landmarks, fields, and temples, which can be found on opposite sides of the map.
Reference image for Cao Bang
Earlier in development, the rice paddies created the effects of ramps while also allocating “nooks” for tanks to hide, giving the vehicles too much coverage. The Art team did a lot of heavy lifting to adjust the rice paddies to edit the steepness. The geometry was updated to create a terrain layer to avoid too much coverage for tanks.
With all the changes we made, Cao Bang has become a favorite map of the Design team.
Fredvang concept art
Based in Norway! Originally called “Fredvang Bridge,” the name of the map was adjusted to Fredvang (thanks to the feedback of our Supertesters), as there were concerns players would assume this would be a bridge battle only. You can still see the Fredvang Bridge on the east side of the map!
However, there are a lot of other high vantage points that are the focus of this map. While it can be played with the “King of the Hill” approach, the map itself allows for multiple hills to be dominated by opposing teams. It’s not that there’s a single hill you want to dominate, but several hills for players to enjoy instead. It becomes a matter of who reigns supreme to the very end, and not just on the hills.
Another highlight of this map is the aircraft carrier off the coast. It’s got the landing strip with the jets pulling off, and you’ve got these fighter jets fighting overhead throughout the entire battle. It’s the audio that gets me on this map—it’s really become my favorite map in terms of the whole theater of war.
The map has much more of a night feel, which meant that lighting was another challenge. The struggles and comments that would come up throughout playtests related to the inability to find tanks across the map. As a result, lighting went through countless iterations to make the map brighter but also maintain the feel of night/twilight.
The Art/Tech team worked on the map for months just to get the effects of the aurora borealis just right. It is certainly a breathtaking place.
Mannheim concept art
To close out our four new maps, we have our jungle map, we have our desert map, and we have our winter map, so it was time we had an urban map. The result is that Mannheim is a dense urban map with buildings, skyscrapers, and other city landscape elements.
The map is constructed diagonally with two rivers that split the city into three main blocks. The area at the center of the city opens up a bit where players might gravitate towards into a brawl zone, but overall it’s a dense map with not a lot of long sightlines.
This is why the map has three different tiers or levels of combat. Players can traverse through the river, move along street-level roads, or take the overpass highway. While the map is heavy on urban landscape components, there is very little cover in certain channels.
We cannot wait to have these maps in game, LIVE!
Which new map has you most excited? Let us know in the forums!
Also, don’t forget that we’ll be publishing more information leading up to the release of World of Tanks: Modern Armor! Check out the article schedule here:
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